Josephine County Faces Crime-Reporting Problems

By Sharon Ko

GRANTS PASS, Ore. — Dozens of distressed residents are calling the Josephine County Sheriff’s Office and running into dead-ends.

The Sheriff’s Office says it is getting up to 80 calls a day, but in most cases they are not able to help. The Sheriff’s Office says it’s getting by with what it has. From patrol deputies to the investigation’s unit, cuts have been made across the board and residents are feeling the impacts.

A debt collector working in Josephine County, who wanted to remain anonymous, says she and her partner were assaulted trying to repossess a car. She says the driver refused to give in and intentionally tried running her partner over. She called 911, but the operator could not send someone out; that’s because Josephine County cut its patrol division to six deputies.

The Sheriff’s Office says it’s still working on its website where residents can file incidents online. A spokeswoman says reports of crime will be logged and the victim will get a case number for insurance purposes. But those cases will likely not be pursued because the Sheriff’s Office investigation unit no longer exists.